Charles Rosekrans / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

Royal Strings

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The strings were first orchestral instruments to reach their modern state, and they have always been at the very core of the ensemble. There's also an extensive repertoire of music originally written for strings that has been adapted time and again by composers and conductors alike. With Telarc's 2001 release of Royal Strings, Maestro Charles Rosenkrans and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra have created an anthology of some of the most lyrical and varied selections from the vast string repertory. Royal Strings spans over two hundred years of music. The recording opens with an uneventful reading of Felix Mendelssohn's Allegro Moderato from his. The second piece on this recording is a rather staccato and quick interpretation of Ralph Vaugh-Williams Fantasia on Greensleeves, like many interpretations of this work it's either done too fast or too slow, and rarely just right, fortunately Cleo Gould's lush violin work is the saving grace for this piece as you can almost hear the bow on the neck of the instrument as she wistfully caresses the notes from the strings. The third track on this recording, Antonin Dvorak's Moderato is uneventful and bland, almost without character; but the work that follows, Tomaso Giovanni Albinoni's dirge-like Adagio for Strings may, quite possibly, be the freshest rendition of this piece to date. Cleo Gould brings this piece to life as well with her gently evocative violin performance. Royal Strings moves on through six more tracks of uneventful and overly programmed works. Gould's performances on this recording are the highlight. This recording is worth having just to hear the pieces that she plays on. This is a well done recording, but the works on the recording have been done quite a bit and Maestro Rosenkrans doesn't breathe new life into any of the performances, they are, merely, rerecorded.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
Octet for strings in E flat major, Op. 20
1 15:28
2 04:40
Serenade for string orchestra in E major, B. 52 (Op. 22)
3 04:42
4 10:38
Serenade for strings (or piano, 4 hands) in C major, Op. 48
5 04:07
Dido and Aeneas, opera, Z. 626
6 03:52
String Quintet No. 2 in G major, Op. 111
7 07:50
8 04:44
String Quartet No. 14 in C sharp minor, Op. 131
9 07:01
String Quartet No. 16 in F major, Op. 135
10 11:57
blue highlight denotes track pick